Council apprentices building their careers on Islington estates
By poppy_smith | Wednesday, October 17, 2012, 20:52
Two new Islington Council apprentices have been recruited to help maintain the borough's housing estates.
As part of its commitment to create employment opportunities for young people, Liam Mitchell (18) and Terry Baker (20) began their apprenticeships with the council's Estates Maintenance Team in July.
The apprenticeships - one in brickwork and one in carpentry - will last for two years and include gaining hands-on experience working alongside qualified council staff, and one day a week studying for a construction diploma. Based on the New River Green Estate, the apprentices have been helping to carry out a range of repairs to communal areas across Islington's housing estates.
Carpentry apprentice Terry Baker, said:
"I've been given a great opportunity with this apprenticeship. The team are really friendly to work with and I enjoy coming to work. No day is the same either, one day you might be fitting a door and the next putting up signage. Although you get lots of support, you're also given lots of responsibility, which helps build confidence.
"I was working in a supermarket before this but I didn't want to do that for the rest of my life. Learning a trade will always be a useful thing to have and I'm hoping to have a career doing carpentry when I finish this."
Liam and Terry have been paired with a workplace 'buddy', qualified in carpentry or brickwork, to provide them with one to one support throughout their apprenticeships.
Since Islington Council launched its apprenticeship scheme in 2009, 73 residents have taken part, earning valuable skills, experience and in many cases, qualifications too. By the end of March 2013, an additional 34 apprentices will have been recruited.
Islington Council's executive member for children and families, Cllr Richard Watts, said:
"We're on the side of local young people and are working hard to help them find employment and training opportunities. Like all our council apprentices, Terry and Liam are gaining great experience alongside their qualifications, which will be invaluable in helping them find employment at the end of their apprenticeships."
Islington Council's executive member for housing, Cllr James Murray, said:
"It's great that Terry and Liam are gaining from these apprenticeships - and our residents are benefitting too from the contributions they have already made to the maintenance team, helping to keep our estates in good order."